On the Silicon Exposed blog, Andrew Zonenberg looks at Apple's announcement that it won't be able to decrypt its phones for law enforcement agencies. Zonenberg argues that "disk encryption isn't as much of a major game-changer as people seem to think."
First off, the changes in iOS 8 are encrypting data on disk. Voice calls, SMS, and Internet packets still cross the carrier's network in cleartext. These companies are legally required (by CALEA in the United States, and similar laws in other countries) to provide a means for law enforcement or intelligence to access this data.
In addition, if Eve can get within radio range of Alice or Bob, she can record the conversation off the air. Although the radio links are normally encrypted, many of these cryptosystems are weak and can be defeated in a reasonable amount of time by cryptanalysis. Numerous methods are available for executing man-in-the-middle attacks between handsets and cell towers, which can further enhance Eve's interception capabilities.
|“Google's DNS resolver is great, but diversity is good and we thought we could do even better.”|
|In an Era of Mass Surveillance, Technology Companies are Responding to the Demands of their Customers|
|Careful or they'll hear your password|
|How Privacy Vanishes Online|
|Surveiling the Politically Active of 2030|
|How to Avoid Jury Duty|
|“Bioinspired Polymeric Woods.”|
|The Paper Airplane Database|
|Japanese Robot Serves Ice Cream From Inside a Vending Machine|
|“When Life Gives You Lemons.”|
|“Companies like Google seem to have a dangerous disconnect from those of us in the world outside their confines.”|
|The (Very Scary) People of Public Transit|
|CaptchaTweet: Write Tweets in Captcha Form|
|“The more employees are watched, the harder they try to avoid being watched.”|
|Why, Typewriters Are Alive and Well, Thank you|
|Fake Name Generator|
|“Long live the instant gratification economy—and the increasingly sophisticated technology that’s enabling it.”|